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from TRAJE DE BODA (Meritage Press, St. Helena & San Francisco, 2010)

For Paul
by Aileen Ibardaloza

If I love you more, will you love me less?
Paul asked the Corinthians.  This is a
question I settled with myself today.

I will love you in the manner
of good wives, in the manner
of our grandmothers who walked
in faithfulness. I will stand
by you each day in the manner
of good men. I will lay down facing
you each night in the manner of hearts.

I will love you more
when you love me less
or when you love me most.
Constancy has settled on me today.

© Aileen Ibardaloza


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